NOTES: 'The defense got stronger'

Bernard moves up Pac-10 rushing list...defense dominates in final three quarters...offense, defense and special teams news and notes.

Pregame Notes:

  • Oregon State won the toss and deferred to the second half.
     
  • The announced attendance was 32,517 with 10,000-plus Oregon State fans in attendance.  It was the second largest crowd in the Emerald Bowl's six year history.

    "They were awesome. I think they caused a couple of penalties with their noise," Riley said. "When we found out we were coming here, I thought this could happen. A lot of people from Oregon State and alums in the area were excited about being here."
     
  • The officials were from the WAC.
     
  • Weather: 47 degrees, wind E 8mph, rainy and cloudy

 

Series Notes:

  • Oregon State leads 1-0 and is a perfect 2-0 against current ACC members.
     
  • OSU has now won four straight bowl games under Mike Riley who is a perfect 7-0 in post season play.

    "There's nothing to that except our teams have finished seasons on a roll. It's a result of that. our theme has been to try to get better every week. It's played itself out to where the bowl game is just part of that. It's nothing magical at all in preparation," Riley said.
     
  • Maryland's three game bowl winning streak was snapped.
     
  • The game was just Maryland's second in California in the program's 115-year history, and the Terps' first meeting with a Pac-10 team since the 1982 Aloha Bowl.

  • It was the Beavers first game against an ACC opponent since 1942.

 

Offense Notes:

  • The offense generated 383 total yards, 275 on the ground, an Emerald Bowl record, and 108 through the air.  The Beavs averaged 5.1 yards per rush and 8.3 yards per completion.
     
  • The offense picked up 24 first downs, 17 via the run and five via the pass, while converting 7 of 15 third down conversions- their second best conversion rate of the year behind the 12 of 17 performance against Idaho State.
     
  • The offense started 11 of their 14 possessions in Maryland territory but managed just 21 points.
     
  • The offensive line, receivers and tight ends did a fantastic job of opening up huge holes for Bernard and Rodgers to run through although they did give up five sacks, but that was mainly due to the quarterbacks holding onto the ball too long.
     
  • The offense, who was struggling mightily in the second half, put together one of their best drives of the year to end the bowl game. With the ball on their own 1-yard line the offense proceeded to rattle of 14 plays in 6:24 that covered 91 yards taking the ball to the Terrapin 8 as time expired. Bernard and Rodgers touched the ball a combined 12 times on the drive accounting for 88 yards.

    "Roy Schuening and I were the only ones excited about being on the one-yard line," center Kyle Devan said. "We knew we could drive it down the field and take six minutes off the clock.

    "It was a great way to finish a great game. I'm so happy Coach Riley put that game in our hands – the five linemen, the tight ends and the running back. It turned out to be a good choice."
     
  • RB Yvenson Bernard led all ball carries with 177 yards 38 carries - both Emerald Bowl records - earning offensive MVP honors.  Bernard also added one touchdown.  It was the 19th 100-yard game of his career and the 11th time in 13 games that OSU has won when Bernard has topped the century mark.

    He averaged 4.7 yards per touch and had a long of 29 yards which setup the go ahead touchdown.

    "I was rusty," Bernard said. "That's what five weeks off does. I got a little stronger after the first half. For some reason, that's me. I finish off games a little stronger than I start them."

    Bernard finished his career with 3,862 yards moving him into sixth place on the Pac-10's career rushing list.  He moved past Arizona's Trung Canidate, UCLA's Gaston Green and USC's Anthony Davis and Ricky Bell.
     
  • WR James Rodgers had an electric night touching the ball 10 times for season high 115 yards and one touchdown.  He led the team in receptions with five catches for 40 yards, including the Beavers' first touchdown of the game and the first receiving touchdown of his career.

    "The kid does it all," Bernard said. "Man, he's definitely a threat. I can't imagine being a defense and going up against James. It's going to be exciting watching OSU next year from the sideline."

    Rodgers was super on the final drive of the game as he touched the ball five times for 69 yards while alertly sliding in bounds to keep the clock moving.

    Of his 15 touches, 10 of them resulted in a firstdown or touchdown.
     
  • QB Lyle Moevao received his fourth consecutive start but was knocked out of the game in the first quarter at first with a hand injury,but returned on the following series only be knocked out permanently with a ankle injury.

    "He just couldn't run on it well enough to play," Riley said.

    Moevao completed 5 of 9 passes for 40 yards before leaving the game.
     
  • QB Sean Canfield saw his first action since injuring his should against USC in November.  He completed 8 of 14 for one touchdown and one interception.

    His interception came in the second quarter when the Beavers were second and goal. ESPN announcer Lou Holtz called the interception the worst pass in college football history, and its hard to disagree as he could have thrown the ball into the stands, ran out of bounds or tried to take it in for six instead of flipping it into the endzone.

    Not surpringly, Canfield looked tentative and unsure of himself as he was sacked three times and did not make an attempted pass over 20 yards.

    "It was painful to sit out for a while, but Lyle stepped in and got some big wins," Canfield said. "But it was big for our team that I play. I was a little big rusty. The arm wasn't bugging me at all. That wasn't a factor."

    "They are a good defense, but we got it done. We just kept grinding, like we have all year. Not everything is going to go right. I just kept my head up and had a short memory."
     
  • WR Shane Morales was the team's second leading receiver with three catches for 21 yards. After not grabbing a pass in four consective games, Morales caught seven passes for 57 yards in the final three games of the year.

  • WR Chris Johnson caught a season high two passes for 19 yards.
     
  • WR Anthony Brown played the first snap of the game keeping his 42 consecutive start streak intact, 10th all-time at OSU.  He left the game on the following play due a preexisting quadricep injury.

    He finished his career as the school's seventh all-time reception leader with 133 grabs.
  • Receivers Darrell Catchings and Brandon Powers each caught one pass each, but what was really impressive was their downfield blocking for Rodgers.
     
  • OG Gregg Peat received his second start this year as he replaced the injured Jeremy Perry in the lineup.  Perry did not play.
     
  • RG Roy Schuening started a school record 50th straight game.

 

Defense Notes:

  • The defense gave up 224 total yards, 19 rushing and 224 passing, to go with 11 first downs.  But six of the first downs and 164 of the yards came in the first quarter.  In the final three quarters, they yielded just five first downs and 60 total yards.
     
  • It was the seventh time this year Oregon State has held an opponent to fewer than 40 yards rushing.

  • The defense limited Maryland to 2 of 11 on third downs.

  • The defense grabbed two more sacks running their season total to 44, the second most in school history.  They had 47 last year during the 14 game schedule.

  • The defense gave up two first quarter touchdowns, a first this year, and justthe second and third touchdown in the first quarter for the entire season.   OSU finished the year with a 134-30 advantage in the opening quarter.
     
  • LB Derrick Doggett led the team in tackles with eight stops, it was the fourth time this season he led the team in tackles.  He also added his third sack of the year and team leading 14th tackle for loss.

    "We spotted them those two early scores, but we weren't concerned," Doggett said. "We knew if we played like we can play, they wouldn't score again on us."

    Doggett was the game's defensive MVP.

    "We just went out there together and played like we knew we could play," Doggett said. "This is a great honor, but it's not for me. It for our whole defense."
     
  • CB Tim Clark had five tackles - his second highest total in 2007.
     
  • SS Daniel Drayton picked off his first pass of the year returning it 39 yards inside Maryland territory.

    Drayton barely stepped out of bounds and if he would not have, it would have resulted in a touchdown.
  • SS Bryan Payton picked off his first pass of the year after Al Afalava deflected a pass.  Payton returned the ball 10 yards.
     
  • Despite recording just one tackle DE Jeff Van Orsow had a fine game as he was in on many tackles and was constantly in Chris Turner's face.
  • DE Victor Butler added another sack giving him 10.5 this year.

    Butler had at least a half a sack in all but three games this year.

 

Special Teams Notes:

  • K Alexis Serna continued to struggle with field goals as he missed a 48-yard attempt in the second quarter that bounced off the cross bar.  Serna finished the year missing his last five of seven attempts after connecting on all five kicks against Washington. 

    He did connect on all three PATs though as he finished his career making 144 consecutive extra points - a Pac-10 record.

    Serna finished as OSU's career scoring and the Pac-10's second career scoring leader with 383 points - just seven points behind UCLA's John Lee.
     
  • P Alexis Serna punted the ball five times for a 32.2 average with one landing inside the 20. He had an 11-yard punt in the third quarter.
     
  • PR Taylor Kavanaugh set the Emerald Bowl record with 54 yards in punt returns, including a season long 26-yard return to setup the go-ahead touchdown.

 

Miscellaneous Notes:

  • Oregon State won the possession battle holding the ball for 33:13, compared to the Terps 26:47, with 10:25 time of possession coming in the fourth quarter.
     
  • The Beavers ran (77-54) 23 more plays than Maryland.
     
  • It was a sloppy game with the teams combing for 14 penalties and three turnovers.  Oregon State gave Maryland two easy first downs.  One when Dennis Christopher roughed the punter and the other when Keaton Kristick was called for offsides on third down. 

    Maryland gave OSU an easy won though on the Beavers first drive of the game as Alexis Serna was knocked to the turf on a cheap shot that resulted in a 15-yard penalty and a new set of downs.
  • Over the last two seasons OSU is a Pac-10 best 15-3 in the combined months of October, Novmeber and December.
     
  • Oregon State finished the year winning seven of their last eight contests.

  • Due to the configuration of the football field, booth teams stood on the same sideline.

  • Former Beaver basketball great Gary Payton and former Beaver football great Ken Simonton watched the game with athletic director Bob De Carolis.

 

Key Quotes:

  • Head coach Mike Riley - "I'm really proud of these guys. The defense got stronger as the game went on and played our kind of defense – stop the run and get into a good pass situations. Persevering and winning, that's really what that game came down to. Finding a way to win it. That became the formula. Offensively, I can't describe what the right formula was. it was just finding the right way with Yvenson and James, really. And Sean managed the game well for not having played for awhile."

    On playing an ACC opponent - "In a game like this, there's some mystery about the preparation and intrigue about a team you never see. It takes a little bit of time to get a feel for who they are and their speed and what they're doing. It was also a matter of getting back into a game after a few weeks off. But once we got our footing defensively, we were back on top of it."

    On Bernard - "It was absolutely great to have him back. He got a little mad the first half, that we didn't give him the ball enough. That's just typical him. If he's playing in a close game like this one, he's going to get that many carries. He's just getting warmed up at about 25 carries."

    Thoughts before the final drive - "I was thinking if we could get a couple of first downs and punt it out, we'd be in pretty good shape."

  • Defensive line coach Joe Seumalo - "It's not about Maryland, it's about us playing our defense and executing it well. We put ourselves in a great position to do that and still get some pressure on the quarterback. The goal for us is always to make them one-dimensional. To give up 19 yards rushing against an ACC team, to establish ourselves that way, it's a tribute to our players."

  • LB Joey LaRocque - "Ev and James were phenomenal. It was so much fun watching them play from the sidelines. I'm happy for both of them."

  • C Kyle DeVan - On Bernard - "Yvenson got to showcase what he can do," DeVan said. "Roy and I have been with him for five years. We knew from day one he was going to be a great running back. That fourth quarter showed what kind of player he is. He's going to hit you the first three quarters, then he's going to take over the fourth. And James – Maryland was tough, and I have a lot of respect for them. But in the end, I think James Rodgers was a little too tough for them."
     
  • RB Yvenson Bernard - "It's an amazing feeling," Bernard said. "I'm going to have a good taste in my mouth for awhile."

    On the final drive - "In the huddle, Roy told us there would be no better feeling than if we were to go 99 yards on our last drive. I put in my head, ‘I'm going to do it for my man Roy and the offensive line.' "
  • DT Curtis Coker - On Maryland passing early - "It surprised us. I'd say 60 or 70 percent of our practices were run-oriented. They made a big deal at the luncheon about how they ran for 170 yards against Boston College. I thought they wanted to prove to the nation that we weren't the No. 2 defense against the run. We were fired up about that."

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